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  • Writer's pictureAnnie

Clickbait Works Sometimes (And An Interesting Article)

If you are a frequent reader of HuffPost you may be familiar with their absolutely ridiculous and over the top headlines. So over the top that they have started to have the opposite effect on me. Just out of annoyance I barely ever interact with their content. When I click on a news headline I want it to tell me exactly what I am going to spend the next few minutes reading. My time is precious and I don't like when it is wasted. While the HuffPost headlines don't necessarily meet the criteria most people use for clickbait (a headline that is a total fabrication or has nothing to do with the content of the article), it gets pretty close.


This is not to say their headlines never work on me, despite my resistance sometimes they do. When my phone suggested I might want to read As A Kid I Was Told Armageddon Was Near, So I Wouldn’t Need A Job. Now I’m A BDSM Model it was right, and I did. You should too! Then go follow Ariel Anderson on Twitter because she is great. Her story was interesting, the headline was part of the article, and after reading a little but I found it fascinating enough to continue reading.


This blog post is not all about that article though, it is about clickbait. There is no denying that over the top headline reeled me in, but it was the content that kept me there. This is something you need to consider when you are advertising your media. With pay sites there is even more pressure to get this right because of the risk of chargebacks. You could tweet extreme headlines and get a lot of people who are going to be very unhappy with what they find behind the paywall.


What is the lesson here?

  • Don't use over the top clickbait all the time, it can exhaust and alienate your consistent fans. They want to see an authentic you.

  • Do occasionally use over the top language to attract new clicks and get traction on some posts.

  • Make sure the content behind those over the top posts is engaging and at least somewhat related to the click bait that goes along with it.



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